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Assises internationales du roman 2020
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Assises internationales du roman 2020 : "the time of uncertainty"

On the programme of this international conference, organized this year within a "Virtual Villa Gillet", interviews with the guest authors of the festival, unpublished texts, readings, keynotes by book professionals... The festival is open to all and can be followed on the Villa Gillet website.

Updated on 29/05/2020

2 min

In the context of the Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic, the Villa Gillet is offering for its 2020 edition, from 11 to 17 May, a virtual reinvention of its Assises internationales du roman, this year centered on "The Time of Uncertainty".

The annual festival organized by this leading Lyon institution has two missions: to make the voice of writers in the city heard and that of writers around the world. In the period we are currently experiencing, their words can, more than ever, accompany the many questions that arise, make cultures resonate and bring literary dialogues to life.

Virtual Villa Gillet

Video interviews, unpublished texts, readings by actors: the festival will give the floor to authors from around the world and to major players on the literary scene by broadcasting varied content, every day from 12 noon to 9 p.m.

In a “Virtual Villa Gillet”, the writers will evoke themes that echo the times we experience: the time of uncertainty, but also closed-door situation, the narrative of the other, or the professions of everyday life. The Villa's "Gardens" will offer readings by actors. The “World Literature Bar” will be dedicated to professionnal keynotes when the “Theater” and the “Salon” will respectively offer interviews with the festival's guest authors and unpublished texts around the themes on the programme.

Giving voice to world literature

The festival will also give the floor to authors from around the world. From Mexico to Poland, from Tunisia to China, from the United States to Nigeria, from India to Egypt or Morocco, a variety of voices will resonate.

At a time when the book sector is hard hit, the booksellers, librarians, publishers, festival directors will also be heard. Alongside Chilean authors paying homage to Luis Sepúlveda, who died on April 16, 2020, major players on the literary scene will make their voices heard: Sanjoy Roy, director of Jaipur Literature Festival , Lola Shoneyin, author and founder of the Ake Arts & Books festival in Lagos, Nigeria, Wu Qi, journalist and manager of the One Way Space independent Chinese bookstores , or Nick Barley, director of the Edinburgh International Book Festival.

Intervention de Nada El Shabrawy, éditrice (Égypte)
Intervention de Nada El Shabrawy, éditrice (Égypte)
Intervention d'Anuradha Roy, écrivain (Inde)
Intervention d'Anuradha Roy, écrivain (Inde)
Othman Selmi, écrivain et illustrateur (Tunisie)
Othman Selmi, écrivain et illustrateur (Tunisie)
The Institut français and the project

The Assises internationales du roman are supported by the Institut français.


Around 30 videos were co-produced by the French cultural network abroad, as part of the partnership established by the Institut français with Villa Gillet. The Instituts français in Brazil, Chile, China, Egypt, India, Israel, Morocco, Nigeria, Poland, Portugal and Tunisia have participated in this partnership.

L'institut français, LAB